The Army of James II (Helion)

A section devoted to questions and answers for this period.
Diomedes
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Diomedes » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:02 pm

Hi, Author here...

Couple of things.

Yes, this is a very much expanded and extended version of the booklet that I did thirty years ago (THIRTY YEARS AGO ??? Grief !!!). To give you an idea - that work had about 6000 words - this has a little short of 70,000. I have also expanded it to include (as far as I could) the Irish Army. But you get the idea, although there is no denying you will find some duplication of information, which is unavoidable, although there is an awful lot of information that I don't think has ever been published before.

Mark Allen did four of the colour plates but these are new - they are not simply the old ones re-used, I would have hated that probably as much as any buyers. Incidentally (long term) we are jointly paying with the idea of an "Armies of the War of the League of Augsburg" title...

With respect to the Army after James abandoned the throne - this doesn't, I'm afraid form any real part of the book and is simply mentioned in the blurb but here are some thoughts (and quite open to debate on this one).

There was no wholesale disbandment of the Regiments and those new ones that were disbanded (entirely the newly-raised and partly-formed units) had the personnel that they had raised merged into the rest of the Army.

About 65-70% of the Officer Corps was acceptable to William and offered new commissions although, in the end, only about half of these actually served and William was forced to find a great number of new officers.

However there were very few desertions from the rank and file (covered in one of the book's appendices btw) and even fewer mutinies so the Army that William put new officers into was experienced, even if its officers were often not as much so. This is why the Army did so well in Ireland and on the Continent when it went there - although as I said many officers had to learn their trade but also many officers got promotions so that the newly-commissioned often went in at lower company positions. (Incidentally a great number of the personnel has served on the continent 1672-78 and over 4,000 foot had served in Tangier so it certainly wasn't "raw").

Overall the Army didn't collapse in 1688, and the rank and file in the main remained loyal to the oaths (witness what happened when there was an attempt to lead three Regiments of Horse over to William...). What collapsed was James' own morale particularly after his abandonment by Anne (cf Ungrateful Daughters - interesting book).

The ARMY was still effectively in being, albeit missing many officers from December, January onwards. It probably would have collapsed if the officers had done a "mass resignation" but luckily they didn't and with the NCOs mainly staying true to the Crown (whoever was wearing it) it continued in being...

Anyway that's me waffling now and going well beyond the main topic of this thread but, as I said, more than happy to debate this one if anyone has other information from the Winter of 1688/9 that I haven't found (yet, but the search continues :) )
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by turrabear » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:51 pm

Diomedes wrote:Hi, Author here...

Couple of things.

Yes, this is a very much expanded and extended version of the booklet that I did thirty years ago (THIRTY YEARS AGO ??? Grief !!!). To give you an idea - that work had about 6000 words - this has a little short of 70,000. I have also expanded it to include (as far as I could) the Irish Army. But you get the idea, although there is no denying you will find some duplication of information, which is unavoidable, although there is an awful lot of information that I don't think has ever been published before.

Mark Allen did four of the colour plates but these are new - they are not simply the old ones re-used, I would have hated that probably as much as any buyers. Incidentally (long term) we are jointly paying with the idea of an "Armies of the War of the League of Augsburg" title...

With respect to the Army after James abandoned the throne - this doesn't, I'm afraid form any real part of the book and is simply mentioned in the blurb but here are some thoughts (and quite open to debate on this one).

There was no wholesale disbandment of the Regiments and those new ones that were disbanded (entirely the newly-raised and partly-formed units) had the personnel that they had raised merged into the rest of the Army.

About 65-70% of the Officer Corps was acceptable to William and offered new commissions although, in the end, only about half of these actually served and William was forced to find a great number of new officers.

However there were very few desertions from the rank and file (covered in one of the book's appendices btw) and even fewer mutinies so the Army that William put new officers into was experienced, even if its officers were often not as much so. This is why the Army did so well in Ireland and on the Continent when it went there - although as I said many officers had to learn their trade but also many officers got promotions so that the newly-commissioned often went in at lower company positions. (Incidentally a great number of the personnel has served on the continent 1672-78 and over 4,000 foot had served in Tangier so it certainly wasn't "raw").

Overall the Army didn't collapse in 1688, and the rank and file in the main remained loyal to the oaths (witness what happened when there was an attempt to lead three Regiments of Horse over to William...). What collapsed was James' own morale particularly after his abandonment by Anne (cf Ungrateful Daughters - interesting book).

The ARMY was still effectively in being, albeit missing many officers from December, January onwards. It probably would have collapsed if the officers had done a "mass resignation" but luckily they didn't and with the NCOs mainly staying true to the Crown (whoever was wearing it) it continued in being...

Anyway that's me waffling now and going well beyond the main topic of this thread but, as I said, more than happy to debate this one if anyone has other information from the Winter of 1688/9 that I haven't found (yet, but the search continues :) )
Would like to see a book on williams army if that was possible.
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Glorfindel » Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:48 am

>>here are some thoughts

Thank you very much for this - very interesting. I am looking forward to reading this title (the book is currently in transit)...

>>we are jointly paying with the idea of an "Armies of the War of the League of Augsburg" title...

Yes please ! Let us know if this project does happen.

Best wishes,


Phil
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Old John » Fri Sep 01, 2017 8:18 am

I highly recommend the book, which has proved extremely useful in my own researches and I agree the book "Ungrateful Daughters" by Maureen Waller, very interesting

C A Sapherson's booklet " The British Army of William III" has proved handy as a starting point, again this was first published in 1987, reprinted 1997

cheers Old John
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Ben Waterhouse » Fri Sep 01, 2017 9:11 am

Having read my copy, and owning the original booklet, I concur this is a fine tome with a lot of new material, and I thank both the author and Helion for publishing it. A very, very minor niggle is a few proofreading issues that certainly do not detract from the whole.

Best
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by arthur1905 » Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:47 pm

I have been waiting for this book since early Feb when I first heard about it, it arrived Tuesday and have read 90% of it so far, I must say I haven't been disappointed.

It's a really great read and so full of new information, and well written and organised.

my thanks to Stephen and to Helion

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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Hanni » Fri Sep 01, 2017 6:29 pm

There is a review of the book in the latest 'Arquebusier' for those who are members of the P&S Society.
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Diomedes » Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:26 pm

Re Army under William.

Other projects on the go at the moment but am researching the Army under William as I go but have to say that I think I am a few years away from that one yet (although not thirty years away - Still haven't got over that - THIRTY YEARS ???? :) )

The Dutch Army under William is, of course, well covered in the P&SS publication but the English & Scots (it still isn't a 'British' Army) Armies? Nothing since Sapherson really and that's also thirty years old as well...
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by wdrenth » Sat Sep 16, 2017 8:38 am

Thanks for the replies Diomedes
As to the army under William III, you may find one of my publications of interest.

all,
For those interested, please find my review of this fine book at: http://britisharmylineages.blogspot.nl/ ... birth.html

all best,
Wienand
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by Ronan the Librarian » Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:39 pm

Having just read Wienand's review, I have to say that I am in complete agreement, apart from one point - the focus on the individual regiments. Mr Ede-Borrett does make the point in his introduction that his book is not meant to replace Mr Childs' earlier work. He also adds that virtually all of Mr Childs' work is still valid and hence does not require repetition, which I think is a fair comment.
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by The Rabblerouser » Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:36 pm

turrabear wrote:
Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:51 pm
With respect to the Army after James abandoned the throne - this doesn't, I'm afraid form any real part of the book and is simply mentioned in the blurb but here are some thoughts (and quite open to debate on this one). :) )
Could this book still be of use in understanding the general practices of the military organisation of the time as well as providing information on James Irish regiments for the War in Ireland?
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by arthur1905 » Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:22 pm

The simple answer is Yes, the background detail is still valid in regard to equipment, tactics and regimental makeup etc, there is unfortunately very little available information of the state of the English establishment from the abdication of James II until the army was sent to Ireland under William III in 1689. its only a short period, but in my humble opinion a vital area, as the army is transformed during this time.

other useful sources are John Childs works on the Nine Years War and the British Army (1991), British Army of William III (1987)and the Williamite Wars in Ireland (2007)

I have just entered a Ph.D. proposal to study this area of history, I intend to look at the state of the English army from the eve of the abdication of James II and the cessation of hostilities until the new army is formed in 1689.The main areas of interest are what happened to the Catholic soldiers and officers within the army? how many of them were transported to the Hapsburg Empire? and how was the new army raised. a very short explanation of what hopefully baring, plague, pestilence, dithering etc will run to about 150,000 words give or take.

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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by The Rabblerouser » Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:03 pm

arthur1905 wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:22 pm
The simple answer is Yes, the background detail is still valid in regard to equipment, tactics and regimental makeup etc, there is unfortunately very little available information of the state of the English establishment from the abdication of James II until the army was sent to Ireland under William III in 1689. its only a short period, but in my humble opinion a vital area, as the army is transformed during this time.

other useful sources are John Childs works on the Nine Years War and the British Army (1991), British Army of William III (1987)and the Williamite Wars in Ireland (2007)

I have just entered a Ph.D. proposal to study this area of history, I intend to look at the state of the English army from the eve of the abdication of James II and the cessation of hostilities until the new army is formed in 1689.The main areas of interest are what happened to the Catholic soldiers and officers within the army? how many of them were transported to the Hapsburg Empire? and how was the new army raised. a very short explanation of what hopefully baring, plague, pestilence, dithering etc will run to about 150,000 words give or take.

Mark

Thanks, I had heard that this book is focused more on the regiments than the general history and political manoeuvrings of the time. I am still fairly new to this period so I'm curious to know if this book can provide continuation into the LOA period.

By the what are the contents like for the Childs and Sapherson works? Similar to the Osprey format perhaps?

I wish you good luck with your studies into all this.
No man's knowledge here can go beyond his experience
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by wdrenth » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:43 am

hi,

The works by Childs are 100% academic in nature and composition, including extensive references. His style of writing is very eloquent, and he is very capable of describing the big picture (how do things fit into history), as well as the more nitty gritty stuff. I think his first book, on the army of Charles II, was a result of his PhD thesis, with the other books being logical sequences. They are totally not comparable to the Osprey format whatsoever.
Sapherson's works are booklets that are useful as reference when busy with the regiments themselves -- though he provides useful introductory overviews, it is again not comparable to Childs. But maybe more comparable to Osprey.

kind regards, Wienand
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Re: The Army of James II (Helion)

Post by TheRightfulKing2013 » Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:35 am

arthur1905 wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:22 pm
The simple answer is Yes, the background detail is still valid in regard to equipment, tactics and regimental makeup etc, there is unfortunately very little available information of the state of the English establishment from the abdication of James II until the army was sent to Ireland under William III in 1689. its only a short period, but in my humble opinion a vital area, as the army is transformed during this time.

other useful sources are John Childs works on the Nine Years War and the British Army (1991), British Army of William III (1987)and the Williamite Wars in Ireland (2007)

I have just entered a Ph.D. proposal to study this area of history, I intend to look at the state of the English army from the eve of the abdication of James II and the cessation of hostilities until the new army is formed in 1689.The main areas of interest are what happened to the Catholic soldiers and officers within the army? how many of them were transported to the Hapsburg Empire? and how was the new army raised. a very short explanation of what hopefully baring, plague, pestilence, dithering etc will run to about 150,000 words give or take.

Mark
According to the Osprey book on the Williamite War, at first the new government interned many Catholic officers, but in the confusion many managed to escape to Ireland. Whats interesting is that contrary to popular belief there were some of the opposite religion in both armies (notably Catholics in the Dutch Blue Guard). During James II's reign 1685-8 (or de jure to 1689 in Scotland), the Irish Lord Deputy, the Earl of Tyrconnell was busy purging Protestants from the army there. After the Revolution, the Jacobites sent Lord Mountjoy (a Protestant) to Versailles ostensibly on a peace mission, but with a letter to Louis requesting his arrest so he could not lead Loyalist forces in Ireland.
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